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Relay For Life - Only one month away

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The East Otter Tail Relay For Life, a signature event of the American Cancer Society, is only a few weeks away.

The theme for this year's Relay is birthday-centered: "Helping People Celebrate More Birthdays." This describes how the local Cancer Society helps people: To Stay Well (prevention and early detection), To Get Well (American Cancer Society's services), To Find Cures (research), and To Fight Back (advocacy).

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"Our Relay looks like a birthday celebration," comments Dee Anderson, a veteran of all 16 Relays, "with people lighting candle luminaries, lots of foods to eat, games throughout the night, lots of joyous noise and crowds of people."

All this activity begins at the Perham High School track on July 9 and extends through the night into Saturday morning. The Relay invites the whole East Otter Tail community to come and help celebrate. The event is free to the public.

Encouraged by past successes, the Relay Organizing Committee has set some lofty goals for the 2010 Relay. Critical to meeting these goals is team recruitment and organization. Their goal is to have 35 teams involved-and they still need a few more teams to reach the goal.

Previous team leaders are encouraged to re-organize for 2010. New teams of friends, co-workers, church members, school, family members, club or service organization participants are all invited to form new groups of around 10 people.

As team recruitment chair Jim Stenger says, "It's really pretty easy. It's a great cause, and the night is a lot of fun." For more information about organizing a team, contact Jim 218-234-8419 or eotteamchair@gmail.com; or Lisa Peterson at 218-346-4747.

Sponsored fundraising activities are already underway in the community. There have been breakfasts, dinners and luncheons; a very successful 5K race; bake sales and crafts. Coming in the next few weeks the teams invite the public to a salad luncheon, a golf scramble (June 18), raffles, bake sales, and garage sales. A noon lunch and bake sale is planned over three noon hours in early July at the Perham Locker plant.

To learn more about these activities and East Otter Tail Relay For Life, visit www.relayforlife.org/ottertaileastmn.

The Relay Committee has selected the 2010 Honorary Co-Chairpersons for the year. These will be introduced in a separate announcement in a couple of weeks. The Survivors' Committee is busy organizing the Relay Survivors' Dinner, which is held at Mulligan's Restaurant on Monday, July 5. All cancer survivors are invited to attend.

This committee also needs names of survivors who may not be on their list so invitations can be issued. Call LeRoy and Ruth Wegscheid at 218-367-2571 or Judy Kunza at 218-346-4716.

They also invite nominations for the 2010 Employer of the Year Award. This award recognizes any company, small or large, who has made special efforts to help an employee with cancer- adjusting work hours, granting time off for treatment, etc. Last year's Employer of the Year was Arvig Communication Systems.

Relay For Life Chairperson Lisa Peterson summarizes the feeling of the whole committee: "Join the excitement of the Relay. Time is running out, but organizing a team is still possible. If you can't be part of a team, join the community at the Relay to celebrate 'More Birthdays by Helping People.' We don't want any of you to miss all the fun of that night."

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